A former Isle of Wight man forcefully entered a couple’s Newport home, threatening to set the house on fire and kill the family dog if they did not pay their "son’s debt" to him.

Thomas Riordan, now of Globe Road, Stratford, London — formerly of East Hill Road, Ryde — appeared for sentencing at the Isle of Wight Crown Court today (Wednesday, November 15) after previously pleading guilty to common assault and using violence to enter a property.

Tim Devlin, prosecuting, said the 27-year-old knocked on the door of a property on Scarrots Lane in Newport, along with another man, on the evening of April 4.

A woman opened the door, and Riordan demanded to know whether her son was home, claiming he owed him money, the prosecution said.

Mr Devlin told the court the son was not home, and the mother didn't know where he was, so she closed the door.

Riordan then proceeded to aggressively kick the door and forced his way into the property after the woman re-opened the door, and he demanded she pay him £450.

Riordan threatened to set the house on fire and kill the family dog, Mr Devlin said, before reaching out to grab the woman’s husband – who had joined his wife near the front door – which caused the woman to fall.

The offences were in breach of a two-year suspended sentence handed to Riordan on September 6 last year.

Riordan has 31 previous convictions for 74 offences, the court heard, but was recently cleared of unrelated charges of assault, criminal damage and threatening a person with an offensive weapon.

Jim Osborne, defending, said his client is now in ‘gainful employment’ with a scaffolding company on the mainland.

Judge Recorder Paul Garlick told Riordan he was a ‘man of some intelligence’ who had ‘gone badly off the rails’, threatening imprisonment of ‘years, not months’ should he return to crown court.

Riordan was handed a two-year community order to include 30 rehabilitation days and participation in the thinking skills programme.

He was also ordered to pay a £150 fine for the suspended sentence breach and a £114 victim surcharge.